See things as they are

It seems to me there is so much chaos, so much contradiction and so much strife and war, hatred and sorrow.

Published: 03rd October 2018 05:08 AM  |   Last Updated: 03rd October 2018 10:36 AM   |  A+A-

BENGALURU: I am so glad it is such a nice morning. A beautiful sky and lovely countryside. But I am afraid this is not a weekend entertainment. What we shall talk about is quite serious, and perhaps after I have talked a little we can talk over, discuss, or dialogue, or talk over together what we have talked about.
I don’t know how you feel about what is happening in the world, in our environment, to our culture and society.

It seems to me there is so much chaos, so much contradiction and so much strife and war, hatred and sorrow. And various leaders, both political and religious, try to find an answer either in some ideology, or in some belief, or in a cultivated faith. And none of these things seems to answer the problems. Our problems go on endlessly.

And if we could in these four talks in this tent and the two discussions that are to take place, if we could be serious enough to go into this question of how to bring about, not only in ourselves but in society, a revolution, not physical revolution because that only leads to tyranny and the heightened control of bureaucracy; if we could very deeply find out for ourselves what to do, not depending on any authority, including that of the speaker, or on a book, on a philosophy, on any structural behavioural pattern, but actually find out irrevocably, if one can, what to do about all this confusion, this strife, this extraordinary, contradictory, hypocritical life on leads.

To me it seems to be fairly clear that to observe there must be freedom, not only the outward phenomenon, but also to observe what is going on within ourselves, to observe without any prejudice, without taking any side, but to examine very closely, freely the whole process of our thinking and our activity, our pleasures, fears, and all the things that we have built around ourselves, not only outwardly but in ourselves as a form of resistance, compulsive demands, escapes, and so on.

If we could do that consistently, with full intention, to discover for ourselves a way of living that is not contradictory, then perhaps these talks will be worthwhile; otherwise, it will be another lecture, another entertainment, pleasurable or rather absurd, logical or illogical and so on. So if we could completely give ourselves to the examination, to observe intimately what is going on, both outwardly and inwardly.

Now the difficulty in this lies, it seems to me, in the capacity to observe, to see things as they are, not as we would like them to be, or what they should be, but actually what is going on. To so observe has its own discipline, not the discipline of imitation, or compulsion, or conformity but that very observation brings its own discipline, not imposed, not conforming to any particular pattern, which implies suppression, but to observe. After all when you do observe something very closely, or listen to somebody very fully, that very listening and seeing, in that is implied attention. And where there is attention there is discipline, without being disciplined.

-- Jiddu Krishnamurthi


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